RSPB asks Devon residents to share how nature has supported them during lockdown

Authored by Mary Youlden
Posted: Wed, 07/01/2020 - 10:10pm

Between 1st and 31st July, the RSPB is inviting people from Devon and across the UK to share the new things they have noticed that’s different in their world, and what they have started to value more during these unsettling times as part of a nationwide celebration of nature and wildlife

Since the UK first went into lockdown it’s been a unique time for most of us. This spring has been unlike any other and, more than ever, we’ve seen how important the natural world is to our health and wellbeing.

From enjoying the uplifting sound of birdsong through an open window, to...

The Donkey Sanctuary remains closed to visitors

Authored by Mary Youlden
Posted: Wed, 07/01/2020 - 3:52pm

The Donkey Sanctuary in Sidmouth will remain temporarily closed to visitors despite the lifting of some lockdown restrictions from Saturday July 4.

The charity’s international headquarters in Sidmouth welcomes around 400,000 visitors every year, and with such a large number congregating on site from across the UK, there is the heightened risk to the charity’s staff whose main priority is to care for the resident donkeys.

Faith Burden, Executive Director of Equine Operations at The Donkey Sanctuary said: “Unlike other visitor attractions, we have numerous entry points to...

Big Issue sets out plan for vendors’ safe return to selling the magazine on Exeter streets on 6th July

Authored by Exeter News Blog
Posted: Tue, 06/30/2020 - 10:40pm

The Big Issue Group has confirmed details of its plan for vendors’ return on Monday 6th July to selling the magazine in Exeter, with measures including the provision of extensive PPE, contactless card payment equipment and the introduction of stringent health and safety procedures in all distribution offices.

The Big Issue, which offers homeless and vulnerably housed people across the UK a means by which to earn a legitimate income, took the decision to safeguard its network of vendors and the public by asking that they stop selling on streets across the whole of the UK with...

Marine Conservation Society calls on public to #KeepItClean

Authored by News Desk
Posted: Tue, 06/30/2020 - 9:42am

The UK’s leading marine charity, the Marine Conservation Society , is calling on the UK public to Keep It Clean and Take It Home as huge swathes of litter pollute outdoor spaces across the country.

Beaches, parks and public spaces are suffering the scourge of litter and single-use plastic, from cups to gloves, takeaway food containers and face masks. It’s easy to think that litter on land has no role to play at sea, whereas in fact, 80% of ocean litter comes from land*. In a recent survey, 63% of those asked were very or extremely concerned about marine plastic pollution and 61%...

Council considers bringing the running of leisure facilities back in-house

Authored by Exeter News Blog
Posted: Mon, 06/29/2020 - 10:52pm

Council Leader Phil Bialyk has announced that he wants the running of the city’s leisure facilities to be brought back under the control of the City Council.

The current leisure contract with operator Legacy Leisure runs out in September, and the Council had been in the process of procuring a new operator.

But, due to the impacts of Covid-19, councillors will now consider ending that procurement process and bringing the services back in-house.

Staff working at the city’s leisure sites, which are currently closed due to coronavirus restrictions, would transfer to...

University of Exeter’s 3D printers help to produce thousands of items of PPE for key workers

Authored by Mary Youlden
Posted: Mon, 06/29/2020 - 10:16pm

The University of Exeter’s 3D printers have been used as part of a city-wide effort to produce thousands of items of PPE for key workers.

The machines, normally used as part of academic work by staff in The College of Engineering, Mathematics and Physical Sciences and the Digital Humanities Lab were loaned to those running the PPE4Exeter initiative as well as a 3D printing set up run by ExeSails in Topsham.

For two months the ten machines joined others which collectively produced 4,600 face shields for community and care workers.

At PPE4Exeter they were...

Devon sees dramatic rise in demand for mental health support

Authored by janeabsolutepr
Posted: Mon, 06/29/2020 - 2:51pm

Demand for support for individuals suffering with acute mental health conditions during the coronavirus pandemic, has jumped by 23% in Devon over the past two months, according to latest figures released by Exeter-based mental health support service, Independent Living West Country.

The business, which was set up following the withdrawal of MIND in the region in 2018, has seen a dramatic rise in the number of clients being referred to it by Devon County Council, which has responsibility for the care of some of the county’s most vulnerable individuals once they leave the direct...

Silly Squad Summer Reading Challenge

Authored by News Desk
Posted: Sun, 06/28/2020 - 11:34pm

Libraries across Devon and Torbay are calling for children to sign up to the Silly Squad Summer Challenge and read six books this summer as part of the 2020 Summer Reading Challenge.

The Summer Reading Challenge will run from Saturday 4th July to Saturday 5th September. The online launch event will be on Saturday 4th July, a specially commissioned event featuring Rob Pudner of Entertainingly Different. Other events include weekly online Bounce & Rhyme, weekly digital craft sessions, Library Llama Live online event with Sidmouth Library, Really Wild Learning in Torbay, author...

Hospital doctors in Devon urge patients to attend appointments

Authored by News Desk
Posted: Sun, 06/28/2020 - 10:30pm

People in Devon are being reassured there are extensive measures in place to keep them safe when attending hospital, as doctors urge patients to make sure they take up appointments.

Many services were suspended to free up beds and staff for COVID-19 patients, but as the number of cases falls across Devon and nationwide, hospitals in the county are increasing the number of urgent and routine appointments for non-COVID illnesses.

These include tests and scans which help diagnose illnesses, allowing patients to begin potentially life-saving treatment.

But doctors...

Exeter Respect @ Home and Online

Authored by Nigep7
Posted: Sat, 06/27/2020 - 6:09pm

Exeter Respect Festival is not letting Covid-19 get the better of them. Instead of taking place in Belmont Park, its home since 2009, the festival will be represented online at from midday on Sunday 5th July 2020 with material reflecting the music, art and dance contributed by well-loved participants of the Exeter Respect Festival.

Then Exeter Respect will hold a vigil at Belmont Park at 5pm. Bring your pen or colours to draw or write a message on the wall.

In the wake of George Floyd and Black Lives Matter, Exeter Respect’s message ‘All Different,...